[inscribed by Steinbeck] Melbourne :: London :: Toronto: William Heinemann, (1952). Original green cloth, with dust jacket.
First English Edition, published the same year as the American. This is Steinbeck's tale of the Trask family in the Salinas Valley -- and of the two brothers Cal and Aron (for whom read Cain and Abel). The tale was made considerably more famous three years later, with the release of the Elia Kazan film starring James Dean as Cal, Richard Davalos as Aron, Julie Harris as the girl completing the triangle, and Raymond Massey as the boys' father. James Dean would not live out the year 1955. The volume is in near-fine condition (spine gilt less than bright, faint glass-ring on the rear cover). The dust jacket is very good-plus, with minor soil and creases but with no chips missing, unnecessary tape on the backside of the spine ends, and with the flap price of 15s intact. (The very minor flaws of the volume imply that this jacket has been "married" to this volume.) Goldstone & Payne A32c.
The title page of this copy is inscribed by Steinbeck to a character in his next novel, "For Horace Dormody | with the best of | wishes | John Steinbeck". Horace Leonard Dormody MD (1897-1984) was a lifelong resident of the Monterey Peninsula, the setting for numerous Steinbeck novels. Horace's brother Hugh (also an MD) moved to the area in 1922, and two years later Horace followed him there after his own training at Harvard Medical School and Univ. of California Hospital; their joint practice evolved into a proprietary hospital.
"We used to see 125 patients a day," Horace reported. "The canneries were running full blast then and we did a lot of industrial accident work." [quoted in Gerlach-Spriggs et al]
The brothers' hospital in turn evolved into the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula. Horace retired in 1975 and died in 1984; his last child died in 2016 -- quite likely the source of this volume, which came from that area.
Two years after EAST OF EDEN, Dr. Horace Dormody would be immortalized in Steinbeck's next book, SWEET THURSDAY (1954 -- like CANNERY ROW sited among the canneries of Monterey). "Dr. Horace Dormody" is one of the townspeople in that book -- described as follows in the Steinbeck Encyclopedia:
A Monterey physician in SWEET THURSDAY, with whom Doc schedules an appointment to see if there is any biological cause for his discontent. Later, Doc calls Dormody in the middle of the night to treat his broken arm, which Doc thinks he injured turning over in his sleep. Dormody suspects, rightly, that Doc's arm was broken by a hard blow. Professional ethics prevent Dormody from discussing the case with anyone, but he can't help chuckling about it to himself at odd moments. Item #14268